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It's one giant leap for parachute jump teachers raising funds for college

Harry Leach 23rd Jun, 2018 Updated: 25th Jun, 2018

TEACHERS are teaming up with the famous Red Devils and Redditch Veterans for a sponsored parachute jump to raise money for extra-curricular activities for disadvantaged students.

Chris Bird and Malcolm Barnes, teachers at Hunters Hill College, situated between Redditch and Bromsgrove, will be jumping out their comfort zone near Old Sarum Airfield on June 27 in ‘Project Arnhem’.

Hunters Hill specialises in educating children with emotional, mental health and behavioural issues and for the last 13 years the school and the Armed Forces have enjoyed a strong relationship.

Mr Barnes said: “It all started in 2005 when the school organised a trip to Normandy for the anniversary of D-Day.

“Some of the students started casually talking to war veterans – and as it turned out they were from Redditch.

“From there we decided to keep in touch and we’ve organised countless trips together.

“For our students to experience life enriching opportunities, staff work hard to organise a wide range of activities throughout the year.

“It’s fantastic because it educates our students on British history and bridges the gap between the young and old which I think is so important.”

One recent trip saw a class visit Belgium and the Netherlands to mark a 100 years since the Battle of Passchendaele.

Students and veterans attended the Menin Gate Last Post ceremony with local war heroes.

Mr Bird said: “I’m looking forward to jumping out a plane because it is a ‘bucket-list’ experience but more importantly I want to raise money to ensure the trips continue.

“By sponsoring this event you will be supporting students and allowing them to develop skills which will aid them in becoming confident, well rounded citizens.”

Barry Tansley, a member of the Redditch Parachute Regiment Association, said: “I contacted the Red Devils to help set up the parachute jump.

“We have a really special relationship with the school and the students.

“They are extremely well-behaved and always express interest whenever we are together.

“I want to say good luck to the teachers who are raising money for a great cause.”

To back the jump, visit https://mydonate.bt.com/events/projectarnhem

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